Peaceful Evening in Wanaka

Communities and New Badges

Want to join the community and share your photos? Here’s some links for you! :) Google+ turned 2 years old, and they announced a new Badge Maker that you can use for your website. I thought I’d use the new badges below to re-invite you to a few of the communities we started there! These are good places for you to share your work, if you so desire. Also, as always, I am happy for you to share your work here in the comments on the blog too! :)




Daily Photo – Peaceful Evening in Wanaka

I had a peaceful evening in Wanaka.

There is this tree that sits out in the middle of the lake. It’s so unusual. I love the way it reflects back on itself in the smooth water. I was by myself, listening to music on my iPod, and just watching the water as it would calm down then get excited, then calm down again. I swapped out lenses a few times and kept moving around to admire it from different angles. This one was one of my favorites.

Peaceful Evening in Wanaka

Peaceful Evening in Wanaka

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 27, 2013 at 1:21am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/50
  • Aperture13
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length55.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias+1

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Not Impressed by Adobe Creative Cloud’s Launch Features for Photographers

Is this how they usher in the Cloud era?

Today Adobe announced Photoshop CC that is only available to cloud subscribers.

Adobe should not release such lame updates to Photoshop and Lightroom to convince people that the cloud-subscription software is exciting. They should make dramatic improvements – things that photograpehrs can’t live without. Can we live without “Smart Sharpen” and “Intelligent Upsampling” with Photoshop. Err, probably. The Lightroom improvements are equally underwhelming. You know that the updates are lame when one of the top bullet points is “Include video in your slideshows!” How did THAT become one of the top-most-requested features?

Photoshop Creative Cloud

Here's a list of some of the features with Photoshop CC. I am not thrilled. Also, that seems like kind of a lame photo they are using to show off their product, isn't it? Maybe Photoshop has gotten to the point where it is just kind of like a pencil or a paintbrush -- they can't be improved upon. Maybe Adobe really has run out of ideas (except for ideas around new business models where you get to pay them every month).

It also worries me that Adobe is running out of ideas for their photography-related products. Their “big features” are, at best, incremental improvements. They are certainly not exciting enough to drive millions to subscribe to their cloud subscriptions. Their biggest idea, sadly, seems to be cloud-based subscriptions.

Business-model confusion with Adobe

Adobe’s PR and marketing team has a whole list of reasons about why Cloud-based subscription is so awesome for Photoshop. They have a few good points in there, such as it is easy to do incremental updates. But mostly, the reasons are lame and not exciting to amateurs and hobbyists who can’t afford to shell out a ton of money every month.

Here is the confusion: If Cloud-based subscriptions really are so awesome for Photoshop, why do they have a completely different business model for Lightroom? They tell me, well, Lightroom is more for hobbyists and casual people, and Photoshop is more for professionals. I think that sounds kind of ridiculous, don’t you?

What is especially confusing for me is, “How do I explain this to people?” I get a bunch of people that come to this website or to the HDR Tutorial (new and improved, and free as always, btw!) to get advice on what kind of software to get. We get a lot of new photographers who don’t really own any software. Now I have to give confusing advice: “Well, you really need Photoshop and Lightroom. Photoshop you have to pay every month for, but Lightroom you can just buy once.” People are like, “Whhhhaaat?” Why have two business models for such complementary pieces of software? It’s completely confusing to new people, and moderately confusing to veterans.

Anyway, these are the kind of confusing decisions that come out of committees. I hope they clarify things soon, and I also hope they have a business model that is less punitive to beginners, students, and hobbyists that can’t afford the high price of cloud-based subscriptions. It’s not like Netflix or World of Warcraft with their monthly fees. You pretty much have one kind of customer there. With photography, you have the full span of professionals and studios to ameteurs and hobbyists. In my judgment, it’s too punitive to have One-Pricing-Model to rule them all.

Daily Photo – Sunset in New Zealand before the Blizzard

We are expecting a major blizzard coming into Queenstown tonight! We just got back from the grocery store to stock up. I’ve got all my cameras fully charged and ready to go… I’ll try to hit as many places as I can with the fresh snow… chains are ready and all is good to go! Super-excited.

And, speaking of the article above, I can’t think of any of my images that could have been improved if I am using the new features in Adobe’s cloud. Sure, I subscribed to their cloud (Adobe did not gift me one, nor will they probably ever because I am so critical of them), and I am using the latest of everything… but none of these new features have really found their way into my photos yet. Comon Adobe… I know you can do better.

Queenstown Pond Sunset New Zealand

Sunset in New Zealand before the Blizzard

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/5.6
  • ISO280
  • Focal Length28mm (28mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire, compulsory flash mode
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

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Central Park with Clayton Morris from Fox News

Part 1 and 2 of the Fox Interview

Some of you may have seen this, but I am re-sharing, along with a newly published photo that I took on that day with Clayton! After this, Clayton and I got to be friends and he ended up coming to New Zealand… and he may be coming back again soon, I hope! :)

Daily Photo – Under the Bridge in Central Park

And here is one of the final images from the second video above…

Under the Bridge in Central Park

Under the Bridge in Central Park

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 17, 2012 at 11:36am
  • CameraNIKON D800
  • Camera MakeNikon
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture8
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length14.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

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Bryant Park in New York City

Five New eBooks to Enjoy!

Wow! The authors are really putting out amazing stuff over at Flatbooks.com ! I think you’ll be impressed at all the new work over there and you’ll learn a great many things. Here is a selection of some of the newer books that have recently launched! :)

Boneyardby Troy Paiva contains over 60 full sized and zoomable light painted night images, shot in two separate aircraft graveyards, “The Secret Boneyard” and “Aviation Warehouse.” 50 of these images have never been shown before. These are not outtakes or stiffs the author never bothered to do anything with. Half is a body of work from 2008 that has only now been allowed to be displayed publicly by the property owner. The others are a fresh set of A-list images shot in the summer of 2012.

 

 


Travel Photography Exposed by Mike Marlowe is a collection of thoughts, examples and practical tips on life as a roaming travel photographer. This is not an academic theory book; this is a collection of no-nonsense advice from a photographer that does this every day. More importantly, it’s about helping you to do the same. Whether it’s a one-off two-week trip or you want to live your life on the road, this ebook will help you get on the right path.

 

 

Seeing the Unseen – How to Photograph Landscapes at Night by Alister Benn is a complete guide to night photography. This book doesn’t just provide the photographer with a quick set of rule-of-thumb generalizations that make sweeping assumptions and teach you nothing; instead the author shows you how to assess the light that is available and make meaningful and breath-taking images as well as any professional.

This book is suitable for all levels of experience – leading the beginner through the fundamentals, but stretching the boundaries of very experienced night photographers with contemporary advanced techniques.

 

 

A first for Flatbooks – an in-depth video-only tutorial! From Scott Detweiler, author of Conceptual Portraiture comes an hour-long video called Creation of Succubuson creating his portrait titled The Succubus. Using Photoshop CS6 and Lightroom 4 we will step thought the complete workflow that was used to create this image from scratch.

 

 

At 3,310 meters, Cusco ranks within a thousand feet of the highest and most inhospitable cities on the planet – yet everyone from the millennia-old Killke culture to modern adventurers the world over has somehow made their way to this mountain Mecca. This book, The Travel Companion: From Cusco to Machu Picchuby Brian Hoffsis will take you on a journey through Peru from Cusco to Machu Picchu, with 48 photos and individual stories.

 

Daily Photo – Bryant Park in New York City

This is where I ended my walk with Luke that night in New York City. It was sort of a lazy, meandering walk… going here and going there. But my hotel was right by this park. I lament that I never got a shot inside the awesome library, but the tripod police were out in full force. I actually felt like I was in more danger there than in the middle of this New York City park in the middle of the night!

Bryant Park in New York City

Bryant Park in New York City

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 16, 2012 at 9:43pm
  • CameraNIKON D800
  • Camera MakeNikon
  • Exposure Time1
  • Aperture5.6
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length14.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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New York City Bus

Another Favorite Photo from New York City

Here’s one of High Line Park that you might enjoy if you’ve never seen it! :)
HDR Photo

Daily Photo – New York City Bus

Here’s one of the first places I stopped during the New York City photowalk. Since I’m not from NYC, I really get excited about all these thing New Yorkers find quite banal. But I saw that big glass surface and all the reflections, so I got in close with the 14-24mm. I had to be fast… these busses don’t wait too long. I was never tempted to actually get in FRONT of the bus, however. I may not be from NYC, but I don’t have a deathwish while taking photos there! :)

New York City Bus

New York City Bus

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/4
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length14mm (14mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire, compulsory flash mode
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

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